1132 posts tagged with writing.
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Heavily-Delayed Horrors Beyond Human Reckoning

The end of WTF D&D's epic saga of 90's music stars and cosmic horrors has finally begun, half a year after that post (which contains links to the entire story so far). Zack and Steve's zany game logs from the interim: Death Star plans on Naboo (1, 2), Dark Heresy: The Lost Dog Detectives (1, 2), a redneck WWE wrestler, a 90's Marvel character trapped in the Cinematic Universe (1, 2) and a Ghostbusters franchise in North Dakota (1, 2). As evidenced by the site's archives, much pointing and laughing at sourcebooks did indeed also ensue.
posted by BiggerJ on Aug 29, 2016 - 2 comments

“Have you noticed,” she asked, “the clothes thing?”

Clothes aren’t just something one puts on a character to stop her from being naked. Done right, clothes are everything.
posted by betweenthebars on Aug 16, 2016 - 41 comments

The only known recording of Virginia Woolf

The splendid word "incarnadine" for example, who can use that without remembering "multitudinous seas?" "In the Only Surviving Recording of Her Voice, Virginia Woolf Explains Why Writing Isn’t a “Craft” (1937)"
posted by OmieWise on Aug 11, 2016 - 15 comments

If you stretch out your hand, I think you can reach mine

Marianne Ihlen, 81, died in Oslo on 29 July. She was an old friend and sometime lover of Leonard Cohen, whom she met in the 1960s on the Greek island of Hydra, and was the inspiration for his songs So Long, Marianne and Bird On A Wire. Before she passed away, Cohen wrote her a letter.
posted by acb on Aug 7, 2016 - 12 comments

I have also been corresponding with what I think is a robot at Hotmail.

The Emails of Natalie Portman and Jonathan Safran Foer by Jonathan Safran Foer [The New York Times] For over a decade, the Oscar-winning actress Natalie Portman and the author Jonathan Safran Foer have amassed countless email exchanges about family, creativity and angry koalas — until earlier this year, when their epistolary archive mysteriously disappeared. On the eve of her ambitious directorial debut, the old friends start anew, reconnecting online to reflect on how the times have changed, and how they have changed over time.
posted by Fizz on Jul 14, 2016 - 83 comments

Track Changes

Matthew Kirschenbaum talks to The Atlantic about his book on the history of word processing, what early word processing looked like, early adopter Len Deighton, and how writers of all kinds adapted to the new technology.
posted by Artw on Jul 2, 2016 - 28 comments

The Writing Men Want You To Know They've Been Very, Very Bad Boys

"The personal essay format demands that women reveal everything, often to the point of absurdity, while also allowing men to get away with vague metaphors and platitudes. On one end of the spectrum you have “I’m Glad My Friend Killed Herself,” and on the other end you have, "I Did Some Bad Shit, But All You Need To Know Is That I’m Dealing With It, Manfully."
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Jul 1, 2016 - 19 comments

National, just smaller

"I think now is the perfect time to start (or restart) a local digital news operation. There are few greater gifts in journalism than a blank sheet of paper." In CJR, editor and entrepreneur Jim Brady (@jimbrady) on why and how now might finally be the time for local journalism in the USA to find a business model that works. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Jun 28, 2016 - 13 comments

Sometimes I think progress progresses too fast!

"I have found a new way to watch TV, and it changes everything" — Jeff Guo of Wonkblog discusses how his new habit of fast-forwarding TV relates to the history of reading, and considers the role of the content creator in an age of hackable content. (non-WaPo link)
posted by Johnny Wallflower on Jun 22, 2016 - 122 comments

— the punctuation equivalent of stagehands

Period. Full Stop. Point. Whatever It’s Called, It’s Going Out of Style by Dan Bilefsky [The New York Times] The period — the full-stop signal we all learn as children, whose use stretches back at least to the Middle Ages — is gradually being felled in the barrage of instant messaging that has become synonymous with the digital age So says David Crystal, who has written more than 100 books on language and is a former master of original pronunciation at Shakespeare’s Globe theater in London — a man who understands the power of tradition in language The conspicuous omission of the period in text messages and in instant messaging on social media, he says, is a product of the punctuation-free staccato sentences favored by millennials — and increasingly their elders — a trend fueled by the freewheeling style of Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter
posted by Fizz on Jun 14, 2016 - 173 comments

Rad - Getting Crap Past The Radar

The Periodic Table of Storytelling.
posted by veedubya on Jun 7, 2016 - 12 comments

Why can't we get these templates in Microsoft Word?

Letter-Writing Manuals Were the Self-Help Books of the 18th Century. Need to kindly but firmly chastise your son for buying a horse? Read the manual.
posted by cynical pinnacle on Jun 2, 2016 - 13 comments

“...in which he repeatedly referred to the penis area as “down there.”

The Many Ways The Media Gets Around Saying [Groin] By Kyle Wagner [FiveThirtyEight] It’s the oldest laugh in sports: Some poor schmoe takes a sports ball to the crotch, keels over and, once we’re reasonably sure no lasting damage has been done, the TV announcers deadpan some dad jokes while the camera pans around to giggling teammates. It’s as much a familiar sports yuk as other not-all-that-uncommon oddities, like a field player on the mound or the fat guy touchdown, only with funnier GIFs. At least, that’s how things work when the hit comes in a relatively low-stakes setting. But what happens when the stakes are raised? And just as important, when reporters are forced to write about sportsmen kicking each other in the nuts, what do they write? This week has provided some answers.
posted by Fizz on May 31, 2016 - 48 comments

“of, relating to, or suggestive of Franz Kafka or his writings”

Kafkaesque: A Word So Overused It Has Lost All Meaning? by Alison Flood [The Guardian] On Monday night, Han Kang’s strange, disturbing, brilliant novel The Vegetarian won the Man Booker International prize. Shortly afterwards, dictionary publisher Merriam-Webster announced that searches for the word “Kafkaesque” had “spiked dramatically” in the wake of her win, because the novel “has been described by its British publishers (and by a number of reviewers) as Kafkaesque”.
posted by Fizz on May 19, 2016 - 37 comments

A cat-shaped hole in your life.

The appropriate weight of grief. Author Michael Zadoorian on the loss of a beloved cat.
posted by bitmage on May 15, 2016 - 54 comments

Beyond Typewriters

How Literature Became Word Perfect First encounters: writers and word processors and processing words.
posted by kingless on May 15, 2016 - 18 comments

Toasted

In a sea of imperfect options, this is the one I feel best about! We made something great for three years, and now we’re going to go do something else. The only regret I have is that Bustle will outlive us and I will never be able to icily reject a million-dollar check from Bryan Goldberg, but that’s pretty much it. - The Toast will be closing on July 1st. [more inside]
posted by Artw on May 13, 2016 - 185 comments

An endless fount of fanfic

In this true story, the charecters are showing as their real Barbie selves. I have not censored it like the the mainstream storys.
posted by Zarkonnen on Apr 28, 2016 - 14 comments

Art is a conversation between you and someone you’ve probably never met

Years With Yoko. For a long time Ono was basically despised, the inevitable lot of someone married to a person whose fame actually may have eclipsed Christ’s. Fools hate foreigners, and fools hate women, but a lot of people who ought to know better hate the avant-garde, and a lot of people who ought to know better hate the politically engaged, and a lot of people who ought to know better hate polymaths, and Ono is all those things. (SLTheMillions) [more inside]
posted by triggerfinger on Apr 27, 2016 - 67 comments

Puppies All the Way Down

The 2016 Hugo Award finalists have been announced. As is probably to be expected given the problems of the last two years slates have yet again had an outsized influence on the nominations. Though various fixes have been proposed the future of the award may be in doubt.
posted by Artw on Apr 26, 2016 - 420 comments

“crisis” refers a moment when the body identifies intense danger

“To Become Louder, Even Still”: Responses to Sexual Violence in Literary Spaces Apogee Journal has collected fourteen responses from writers to sexual violence perpetrated in the literary community. [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Apr 19, 2016 - 1 comment

MFA novels prefer names like Ruth, Pete, Bobby, Charlotte, and Pearl

How Has the MFA Changed the Contemporary Novel? We wrote a program to analyze hundreds of works by authors with and without creative-writing degrees. The results were disappointing. [more inside]
posted by not_the_water on Apr 11, 2016 - 27 comments

Creators for Creators

The 2016 Image Expo, a satellite event to this years Emerald City Comiccon, brought a wealth of announcements and new comics. It also saw the unveiling of the Creators for Creators grant: The goal of the Creators for Creators grant is to help pave the way for the next generation of comics creators by supporting their work financially and through mentorship, as well as providing opportunities for their creations to reach a wide audience. We plan to give $30,000 to a single cartoonist or writer/artist duo in order to support the creation of a new and original work of a length between sixty-four and one hundred pages over the course of a single year.

Founders of the grant include a rnage of Image creators as well as Spike Trotman of Iron Circus Comics, and they will be providing support and advice to go alongside the money.
posted by Artw on Apr 7, 2016 - 9 comments

Poet & Novelist Jim Harrison has died.

Excellent 1986 interview from the Paris Review. [more inside]
posted by jferngler on Mar 27, 2016 - 39 comments

On totems

Sarah McCarry writes an essay about being called out for inappropriate use of Native American imagery
posted by Uncle on Mar 24, 2016 - 69 comments

Beyond the languages I claim as my own

Jalada, a pan-African writer's collective, has just published their first Translation issue. Thirty three writers from across fourteen African countries came together to create this work of art, an entire issue showcasing a previously unpublished story by Ngugi wa Thiong’o. (Previously) [more inside]
posted by infini on Mar 22, 2016 - 7 comments

authors and the truth about money

It is clear that authors, like other creative people looking to make a living doing what they love and are good at (bringing joy to many people in the process), are going to have to look to new ways of supporting themselves. But self-publish? No way.
posted by betweenthebars on Mar 21, 2016 - 82 comments

“It's fierce, an' it's wild..."

RIP Barry Hines, author of A Kestrel for a Knave that was adapted into the British film classic Kes. He also wrote the screenplay for Threads. [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Mar 21, 2016 - 16 comments

There Is Light Here As Well

"Growing up in this home, I was ensconced in blackness — and as an adult, I now see and appreciate the ways that affirmed my identity. I finally saw Ferris Bueller’s Day Off when I was 24, and I was shocked that it was lauded as a 'staple of teen comedy.' I had always thought that the classic tale of Chicago youth skipping class was Cooley High. I didn’t learn whiteness as a default, or the limitations placed on those who exist outside of it, until I was much, much older." Jasmine Sanders (@ToniAliceZora) writes for Buzzfeed on growing up in one of Chicago's poorest black neighborhoods. [more inside]
posted by capricorn on Mar 20, 2016 - 18 comments

“What’s your son going to think?”

“What will your kid think?” and “Are you worried your son is going to hate you when he grows up?” and “Are you going to let him read it?” and “What’re you going to do when your kid Googles you?” are all questions that, even when offered lightheartedly and in a spirit of ostensible support, feel less like genuine questions and more like a chastening. “Remember, you’re a MOM” and “Remember, you have a mother” both mean “Remember, you’re a woman, and there are consequences.” The Patronizing Questions We Ask Women Who Write by Meaghan O'Connell
posted by nadawi on Mar 17, 2016 - 53 comments

Jay and Miles and Chris X-Plain the X-Men

Jay and Miles X-Plain the X-Men (previously) has hit its 100th episode and has a very special guest star... Chris Claremont.
posted by Artw on Mar 15, 2016 - 31 comments

Little Labors

The Only Thing I Envy Men is an essay about women writers by Rivka Galchen, taken from her book Little Labors. The book focuses partly on writing by Japanese women, especially the 11th Century writers Sei Shonagon and Murasaki Shikibu, authors of The Pillow Book and Tale of Genji respectively. The latter has recently been retranslated, and was the subject of a lengthy article in the New Yorker by Ian Buruma.
posted by Kattullus on Mar 7, 2016 - 10 comments

Face front, true believers!

He built Marvel Comics and laid the foundation for today’s blockbuster superhero movies. So why, at 93, is his legacy in question?
posted by Artw on Feb 25, 2016 - 65 comments

States of Being Besides Nirvana

After many months, Something Awful (and now also The Bad Guys Win) comedy/insanity writer Zack Parsons (previously) has finally confirmed the long-promised finale of his and Steve Sumner's series of Call of Cthulhu 1990's Handbook campaigns starring Kurt Cobain, Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes and Eazy-E as they battle forces beyond human ken: the custom module Hard Ticket to Baghdad. (He also eventually finished the Tooth Tooth series because word is bond, god.) Beneath the fold: the entire story so far, including the recent 'solo project' campaigns. [more inside]
posted by BiggerJ on Feb 23, 2016 - 16 comments

The Perfect Democratic Stump Speech (sl538)

We asked Democratic speechwriter Jeff Nussbaum to write a totally pandering stump speech for an imaginary Democratic presidential candidate — one who espouses only positions that a majority of Democrats agree with (we also did the same with Republicans). Here’s the speech he wrote, including notes to explain his phrasing, behind-the-scenes tips on appealing to Democratic voters and the data he used to decide which positions to take.
posted by Going To Maine on Feb 19, 2016 - 8 comments

Preparing For Your Appointment at the Podiatrist.

Preparing For Your Appointment at the Podiatrist Identify the problem. Recall your shaky theories about the dark spot on your left big toenail that first appeared you-can’t-remember-when: it’s mud, it’s a smear of brown hair dye, it’s a bruise from a 25-pound bag of trash you dropped on your foot while clearing out your childhood home to put it up for sale.
posted by zutalors! on Feb 16, 2016 - 21 comments

"Men are the new carpetbaggers..."

The Testosterone Takeover of Southern Food Writing In which Kathleen Purvis asks why male voices have come to dominate big-market Southern food writing and pokes at the genre's resulting obsessions with "bourbon, barbecue and pork belly." From The Bitter Southerner.
posted by Miko on Feb 16, 2016 - 41 comments

This is the last time I leave the house until I finish the novel.

Eventually, I wind up in the master bedroom, looking at a poster against the wall that has a hand-drawn map of Area X on it, just like I thought the former director would have left behind. It’s a poster I drew myself, of course. But I stare at it for a while, and a genuine feeling of dread and fear travels up my spine. I’m seeing the room through Control’s eyes—he’s looking at a map created by some unknown source, wondering what the hell it’s doing in the former director’s bedroom.

Getting an entire trilogy published in less than a year is bad for your (mental) health, as Jeff Vandermeer found out writing the Southern Reach trilogy.
posted by MartinWisse on Feb 15, 2016 - 36 comments

one weird trick that makes a novel addictive

Catherine Nichols on the technique of adaptation. [more inside]
posted by flex on Feb 8, 2016 - 27 comments

Who Tells Your Story? Historical Fiction as Resistance

What my favourite historical fiction has done for me, besides make me happy in the way that good books do, is teach me more about justice, and silence, and perspective. These are the questions I want to spend my time examining and writing about. The limits placed on many women’s lives are the very reason they are conveniently written out of the dominant historical narrative, in a circular argument as old as misogyny itself: “Women do not appear in the record because they didn’t do anything of note, and they didn’t do anything of note because they don’t appear in the record.”
posted by sciatrix on Feb 8, 2016 - 11 comments

Does this mean I have to be /me/ for all eternity?

A Visit, by Bette Howland. [more inside]
posted by solarion on Jan 24, 2016 - 6 comments

Think You're Done? You Thought Wrong.

25 Steps To Being A Traditionally Published Author: Lazy Bastard Edition. Your brief guide through the process, from drafting (5. All First Drafts Are Word Vomit Made Of Horse Shit) to querying (14. I Have Queried Every Agent In The Entire Universe, And No) to post-publication (25. My Book Sales Did Not Exceed My Wildest Dreams And I’m Disappointed Because My Publisher Didn’t Get Me Enough Publicity And Barnes And Noble Doesn’t Carry It And I Wasn’t On Oprah And 50 Shades Sucked Butt And Wah). [more inside]
posted by showbiz_liz on Jan 22, 2016 - 13 comments

“When one burns one's bridges, what a very nice fire it makes.”

No trolls allowed: Seattle advertises a writing residency … in a bridge. by Marta Bausells [The Guardian] The US city’s transport department offers $10,000 for a ‘unique’ residency in a bridge tower – in return for ‘an in-depth exploration’ of the space.
“The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS), in partnership with Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) seeks a practicing, published poet, fiction, or creative non-fiction writer for a unique project-based artist residency in the northwest tower of the Fremont Bridge. The selected writer will undertake an in-depth exploration of the bridge and write a piece in response to the experience.”
[more inside] posted by Fizz on Jan 21, 2016 - 48 comments

By Wambui Mwangi

Silence Is a Woman
posted by infini on Jan 15, 2016 - 4 comments

“A tear in this fabric is all it takes for a story to begin.”

Why the British Tell Better Children’s Stories by Colleen Gillard [The Atlantic] Their history informs fantastical myths and legends, while American tales tend to focus on moral realism.
If Harry Potter and Huckleberry Finn were each to represent British versus American children’s literature, a curious dynamic would emerge: In a literary duel for the hearts and minds of children, one is a wizard-in-training at a boarding school in the Scottish Highlands, while the other is a barefoot boy drifting down the Mississippi, beset by con artists, slave hunters, and thieves. One defeats evil with a wand, the other takes to a raft to right a social wrong. Both orphans took over the world of English-language children’s literature, but their stories unfold in noticeably different ways.
posted by Fizz on Jan 10, 2016 - 89 comments

Power of Asian superheroes

To say that Asians cannot be superheroes because of “Asian values” erases traditional and contemporary Asian superheroes, assumes all Asians are the same, and echoes a long history of racist oppression. It tells Asians that we can only be part of someone else’s story, and never make our own stories. Having Asian superheroes is a way of changing all that.
In response to their compatriot Umapagan Ampikaipakan's New York Times piece about the "oxymoron of Asian superheros", fellow Malaysian writers Amanda Ng Yann Chwen and Louise Tan speak of the importance of having relatable role models in fiction.
posted by divabat on Jan 8, 2016 - 60 comments

The internet has made defensive writers of us all

“I realize I’ve begun writing defensively on the web, putting in hedges and clarifications that really aren’t necessary for a charitable reader. I’ve also taken to toning down any rhetorical flourishes that could be interpreted uncharitably in a way that annoys some people. The result: boring writing stripped of a lot of my own personal style.” Paul Chiusano discusses how online feedback has affected our writing styles.
posted by Rangi on Jan 7, 2016 - 114 comments

Memory, Law, and Recording

Sci-Fi Author (and Metafilter's own) Charlie Stross has an interesting thought experiment: Could you get to a technological society without the use of writing? And if so, what would that look like?
posted by The Whelk on Jan 3, 2016 - 58 comments

215 Of The Best Longreads Of 2015

215 Of The Best Longreads Of 2015 [more inside]
posted by triggerfinger on Jan 1, 2016 - 19 comments

How to write comics

Comics writer Kieron Gillen answers the question How do you go from story idea to finished script? Further tips from Kelly Sue DeConnick, Warren Ellis and Mort Weisinger via Alan Moore.
posted by Artw on Dec 27, 2015 - 8 comments

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